Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Contact your legislator


If you are a State employee in Whitman County, please contact the State Health Care Authority and your legislators about the new requirement from Kaiser Insurance, with approval from PEBB, restricting us to using only Kaiser pharmacies.

This policy took effect Jan. 1, yet we were not notified. Why was this not disclosed during the open enrollment period when we could have selected another provider?

To use a Kaiser Pharmacy, we will have to travel 60 miles each way to Spokane. Due to the distance, that could mean time off work, miles on our vehicles, more expensive gas, and time traveling when we should be home getting well. I’ve used the mail order pharmacy through Kaiser and it works fine when you are not in a hurry. At one point, they had to overnight certain meds because they were not available locally. It was very frustrating and scary dealing with the paperwork to do that when you are in the middle of a health crisis.

We appreciate the relationship we have with our pharmacy staff. They are always careful to ensure we aren’t taking medications that would have interactions. This new requirement could have bad consequences for individuals, as well as our local pharmacies.

Kaiser holds a contract to provide insurance coverage for Washington State employees. That includes employees who live outside their pharmacy locations. If they are not happy with that the State should find another company willing to provide the service.

Rob and

Tammy Lewis,

Colfax, WA, and Viola, Idaho


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